318 illegal firearms collected in mop-up

The government has collected 318 guns from residents in the Eastern region, who offered to return them.

The guns were surrendered yesterday following an amnesty issued in October last year. At least 1,011 rounds of ammunition have also been returned.

Eastern Regional Commissioner Isaiah Nakoru said the bulk of the guns were surrendered in Isiolo and Marsabit counties.

Marsabit had last year been hit by bandit attacks. Mr Nakoru said residents voluntarily surrendered the firearms.

“There is no need for residents to carry firearms because the government has assured them of security," said Nakoru.

"Moreover, it is unlawful to keep a firearm without permission from the government. Those holding the weapons illegally have shown remorse and returned them."

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Nakoru commended the residents for having faith in the government’s capability to provide security and for heeding the call to surrender the firearms that were being used to cause mayhem.

Meanwhile, communities living in banditry-prone areas in the Rift Valley have been urged to cooperate with security agencies in an ongoing disarmament exercise.

Speaking to The Standard on Tuesday, Rift Valley Regional Commissioner George Natembeya said Baringo and Samburu counties currently lead in acts of cattle rustling.

“Very few people in the two counties have surrendered their guns," said Mr Natembeya (pictured).

"It is unfortunate that the same counties are recording the highest cases of livestock theft."

Natembeya continued: “Turkana and West Pokot counties are leading in the number of illegal firearms that have been surrendered to the government. Security in the two counties has greatly improved, and we urge those yet to surrender their guns to do so."

On December 31, three people were killed in Baringo and a few others injured after suspected bandits attacked their homesteads.

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